Review: Handels’ Messiah at Christ Church Cathedral

Booklet for Handels Messiah
Booklet for Handels' Messiah

On Thursday last, I had the fortune of getting to hear a powerful, moving & inspiring rendition of George Fredrick Handels’ famous work, ‘Messiah’. As part of a week of celebrations in Dublin called ‘Handel 250′, the magnificent choir of Christ Church Cathedral, The Orchestra of Saint Cecilia, soloists Deboragh Abbot (soprano), Duncan Brickenden (alto), Peter Davoren (tenor) & Philip O’Reilly (bass) gathered in the beautiful venue of Christ Church Cathedral for a performance of the ‘Messiah’, a piece first performed in Dublin in April of 1742.

My first memories of hearing this beautiful piece go back to when I was in 2nd class of primary school, about 8 years old. Our teacher at the time occasionally had a ‘music appreciation’ lesson & more often than not it was an aria or chorus from ‘Messiah’. I have for years failed to catch a live performance of it and my am I sorry it’s taken me so long to do so. It was magnificent from start to finish. The infamous ‘Hallelujah Chorus’ didn’t disappoint – I haven’t felt goosebumps race from head to toe like the ones I felt on hearing the voices raising the roof with their rendition of the powerful chorus. Admittedly, I was moved to tears by it! 

Congratulations to all involved in the performance and in the festival that ran all week which seemed to offer up a fantastic selection of musical delights. There’s photos and video from the week over at the Temple Bar Cultural Trust website.

You can sample some choral tracks I recorded (only when the blinking iPhone decided it wanted to) right here.

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